The Present and Future of

Friends, I’m tempted to just copy in the text of the official press release that’s going out on Monday, but I worked it out with the other parties involved, and we agreed that a message like this would be the most appropriate way to address this situation.

On Feb. 17, I was approached by a person whose name you probably know but who has asked to not be referred to by name until the official announcement is made. This person runs a management company that happens to include some beloved-by-us idols, and they had noticed over a period of several months the frequency at which those idols came up here and the level of response to them in the international fan community, on this site and elsewhere.

The proposition was a simple one: Our intent is to build “a bridge across the ocean” and start semi-regular activities in North America and Europe for existing groups, and launch domestic units within the next two years after sufficient market research has been conducted; we want you, Homicidol Maniac, to be a leader of this effort.

I have a great deal of respect for all of the people involved in this. While we have not always had an easy relationship, we have always had a workable one, and, having spent the past six weeks learning more about the particular people in management and among the talent, I can say that these are deeply serious, intelligent, talented people who are going to be doing incredible things in the world of music for the foreseeable future. I feel a little badly for having thrown some shade their way, but business is business and I got them to understand the different outlook of the average Westerner.

It will, therefore, be an honor to join their team. Specifically, I’ll be working in multimedia creative in everything from concept to marketing, and likely contributing English-language assistance in forming strategic partnerships with other companies.

What does that mean for I’m glad you asked. For me to continue the site as it currently is would, all parties agree, constitute a conflict of interest that would breach the terms of the employment contract I signed last week, and I would need to divest myself of any interest in the site and its activities.

To further that effort, I contacted some people who I’ve known for several years, people with whom I’ve done creative projects in the past. A few literal games of telephone ensued until I was speaking with a senior vice president of web and digital at an enormous international media company; after some cordial negotiations, we agreed that I would sell, along with all associated brand elements and social accounts, for a price that you definitely won’t believe, so I won’t be publicizing it. AND MY LAWYER’S GETTING A BIG CHUNK SO IT BARELY MATTERS! #bitter (But hey, Kerrie’s finally going to get paid, so that’s nice.)

Suffice it to say that the company, which again will be made known when the press release goes out, is making a significant investment as a gamble that this idol thing will, in fact, take off in North America. I’m not completely sure, but I believe that there are relationships between the company, William Morris Agency and Sony, so the interest in seeing if other idols can approach Babymetal’s level of success is apparent.

So isn’t going away. In fact, in the coming months, it will probably get a significant facelift. There will definitely be new writers (a friend that you all know well has alluded with all the subtlety of a Code Orange breakdown that she’s been invited to contribute). There will be new and more and better content than anything that I ever did.

There will be a transition, and this is important because it matters to me: Though my time as owner and primary everything is over in a hot minute, I will still be periodically contributing pieces. The Corenament will be resolved (by me). A few community games that I was in the process of designing will probably still happen down the road.

And between now and when the new creative team officially takes over, I asked that a person who I trust more than anybody to be a caretaker for this dumb place be permitted to step in as lead. So, beginning tomorrow, Kerrie will be the new editor/writer/joker/asshat for, and the creative team assigned by corporate will step in gradually over the next couple of weeks.

Kerrie, as you know, has a wicked sense of humor and a great handle on idol. It helps that she digs pretty much everything that gets kicked around on here, but we’ve been sharing resources back and forth over the past couple of weeks just to get her up to speed. She’s bright and clever, and I have all the confidence in the world that the version of that steps into existence tomorrow morning will be very much like what I tried to build — with the added bonus that Kerrie can actually Japanese, so there’ll most definitely be fewer dumbass errors.

You’ve all been great supporters of this project — from clicking to look at something new to commenting to sending me hate mail to sharing tips — and I’m going to miss that level of involvement in the community, but the bright side is that I get to engage from a new angle now, and actually make money off of a big, bold step forward for idols who definitely deserve it.

Treat the Weeaboo Witch well, and treat my website well. And wish me luck!

It’s ‘ALiVE’! Living Dead I Dolls’ First MV

Oh, happy Friday to me! We just kind of recently got a nice chunk of live video out of Living Dead I Dolls, and now they’re ready to really put themselves before the world with their first MV. I don’t think I need to say for what, given that you’re clearly a literate person:

I’m kind of rooting harder for LDID than most because they’re one of the very first idol projects that I’ve gotten to experience from their literal very beginning, and it’s been educational to see them develop (positively) and get to the point where they’re publicly releasing material (positively) and other than looking like they could maybe stand to have a sandwich or something, everybody seems fine. So far! It’s idol; the members could be kept chained in a basement for all we know.

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Deadlift Lolita Is Definitely Happening: See ‘SIX PACK TWINS’

Mass media really is something else.

Like, before Internet, before TV, before radio, before telegraph, maybe even before the printing press, the weirdest shit could happen anywhere in the world at any time, and almost nobody would ever know about it. Then the geeks took over and now people of like interests can finally get together and share what they’re into. This inevitably leads to subculture mash-ups, and the neat thing about those is that culture is naturally very sticky — you can just keep glomming stuff onto it, and that’s fine, you just made bigger culture.

Hence, Deadlift Lolita:

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The Corenament Has Reached Its Final Four: Who Lives to Fight Another Day?

Well, friends, the Corenament has reached its zenith — the Final Four are ready to square off. It wasn’t easy getting here, but a full month’s worth of pitting idols against idols gave us surprises, cheers and jeers, and plenty of head-scratching confusion.

Out of the wreckage of conference tournaments and the first four rounds of competition stand four elites as selected by you, the fans; literally nobody selected these as the Final Four, but that’s the neat thing about an ongoing war of attrition. Punk was almost completely wiped out by what you might call the three pillars of idol+metal, leaving only Guso Drop to defend hardcore’s honor. And, as an added bonus, the resultant matchups are tasty.

Yes, as the Corenament descends upon Akihabara, we have two of the great champions of the underground squaring off in a fists-and-elbows-vs.-Lovecraftian-horrors battle to the death (that they’d probably welcome!), plus a battle that many a smark fan of idol metal would love to see happen in real life.

While I expect the voting hordes to descend upon these final polls, I also expect the more thoughtful minds to have themselves some agonized decisions!

Voting is open until midnight ET Saturday night. Continue reading

Mugen Regina Is Back

Here’s one that we’ve known was coming, but it’s finally real and I’m glad; fantasy/gothic idols Mugen Regina, who were disbanded at the end of last year and felt like a legitimate missed opportunity, were suddenly going to get a reboot, and that’s just aces.

Their last live was … yesterday? Two days ago? Here’s their little intro video:

Are any of these girls the trainees that were part of the project for like a week last year?

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Thursday Hurtsday Brings Bunnies, But Not What You Expect

Old pal Pure Idol Heart, who has the unique ability/privilege to basically live and breathe idols, shared out another new project the other day, and I immediately thought “Thursday.”

Friends, this is loud:

This is RABBITS Lab (Twitter), and I’ll be damned if I didn’t think for a second that I was listening to DOLL$BOXX. Continue reading

Is This the End of ICE CREAM SUICIDE?

The other night, while chatting with various friends whose names end in Y sounds (and also John) during the WACK auditions, out came this rather ominous tweet from ICE CREAM SUICIDE:

I wasn’t wild about this news, sharing it, posting it, whatever, but it does build on this earlier business about ANFORT, the company behind ICE CREAM SUICIDE and DEVIL GUN, neither of which has amounted to a hill of beans so far, and I’m chalking that up to This Is Not How It’s Done on the part of management.

Basically, the fate of each member in the post-Anna era (remember, she was lawyering up to get out of her contract) was/is going to have her fate decided separately (or has/will decide her fate, I can’t tell), and then the future of the project will come to pass. Continue reading

Start Thursday Dancing with DEVIL NO ID

Aina gets all the buzz for being the featured vocalist on a TeddyLoid EP, but Okinawa’s little electronic gremlin idols, DEVIL NO ID, got into the act, too, with their latest single:

Do you hear it?

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Creative Reflections on Zenkimi’s ‘Sophomore Sick Sacrifice’

Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da’s latest single was pretty great, wasn’t it? Their small-but-talented creative team keeps popping out unique material, and the reward is this constant forward trajectory of growth.

We’ve look at some of the liner notes (more like, post-creative musings) around Zenkimi’s sisters in Yukueshirezutsurezure before, plus reflections on how Zenkimi themselves came to be, and it’s always cool to get inside the heads of the people who make this stuff go.

So when our Anonymous Translator friend (unfortunately eliminated from the Corenament!) offered up the latest notes from GESSHI’s own brain, I would’ve been even dumber than usual to refuse. Continue reading

This Is Promising: Say Hi to Woltanative

I noticed something recently: I used to really dig getting into debuts, but then got away from it because I have the attention span of a flea it’s more interesting to wait until music happens (this being a music website, after all, moreso than an idol one). And I’d be right on board with that approach here, too, but please indulge me just this one little bit because this is going to be a pretty awesome debut.

“A article about some random indie debut? What’s the big deal?” Continue reading